Vaughan Dagnell is a soon-to-be YogaLondon graduate and founder of the charitable organisation Flip Your Dog for Mental Health. Set up in response to feeling disconnected in lockdown, his first fundraiser raised almost £4k for mental health charities and he plans on making his efforts an ongoing platform to join yoga and mental health. We talk to Vaughan about his love of yoga, his own mental health struggles and his hopes for the future.
It’s not often that I compare myself to the Queen, but I did notice in her Christmas speech that she didn’t mention the words Pandemic or Covid once. In all my newsletters, posts and blogs I have made a concerted effort to avoid the elephant in the room. I wish I could say the reason is there are so many other things to talk about… but I think I just don’t want to add to the noise. It is loud out there. Or perhaps I am more ostrich-like than regal, burying my head in the sand (but doing a wonderful headstand while I am at).
Well, here we go again. Lockdown 3.0. We kind of knew it was coming, but that doesn’t make the news any easier to hear.
But in the Prime Minister’s latest lockdown announcement we heard that “roughly one in 50 people have contracted the virus, higher in some parts of the country, lower in others.” This means that we need to play our part to help those NHS staff and key workers who are working so hard and sacrificing so much to save lives.
But we are still allowed to feel sorry for ourselves, as any tentative plans we’d made for the next couple of months and a new year go down the drain – again.
With Christmas being anything but normal this year, it’s important that we keep upbeat.
Back in March many of us thought that we would go into lockdown and come out the other side and back to normality. But eight months later this is very clearly not the case.
Whether it’s down to government mishandling or not, this pandemic is still affecting every aspect of our lives.
With this continued uncertainty, and many of us facing a quiet and potentially lonely Christmas, how can yoga help to boost our positivity levels?
Christmas is a time to let go of all those dietary disciplines and just let loose! For a few days each year, most of us put our healthy eating efforts to one side and over-eat to our heart’s content. And it’s not just the over-eating, it’s rich food!
Take the traditional British Christmas lunch. Turkey, stuffing, pigs in blankets, roast potatoes, roasted carrots and parsnips, mashed celeriac, Brussel sprouts, bread sauce, cranberry sauce and, to top it all off, lashings of gravy. That’s how it goes in our family anyway. What’s lovely about the traditional Christmas lunch is that for every family there’s something a little bit different, which makes it the special annual over-indulgence it is.
And personally, I wouldn’t miss out on any of it. However, the after-effects can be disastrous. So here are some ways to help to alleviate the bloating, lethargy and sluggishness of the post-prandial Christmas state. (more…)